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Predicting Performance in Distributed Enterprise Applications

Kelly, Terence; Zhang, Alex


Keyword(s): performance modeling; response time; distributed applications; capacity management

Abstract: Distributed applications play an increasingly crucial role in business-critical enterprise operations. Understanding the performance of such applications is challenging yet essential due to their growing economic value. A particularly important problem is performance prediction: How will application-level performance vary in response to changes in workload? This paper presents a practical and accurate approach to predicting response times as a function of workload mix in complex modern distributed applications. We compare our approach against several alternatives, evaluating their ability to predict the performance of two large, real business-critical production systems and a testbed application subjected to extremely variable synthetic workload. Our results show that our method yields accurate response time predictions under a wide range of conditions, and that our models generalize well to previously-unseen regions of workload/performance space.

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